A Note to my Small Town Doctor about My Anxiety

My anxiety is frustrating. My anxiety is frustrating because it doesn’t look like anxiety. It doesn’t look like teary eyes or huddling in the corner. My anxiety doesn’t look like your definition. Instead, my anxiety is my lack of ability to breathe. It is the migraine that starts at the nape of my neck and grows up to the top of my skull. It’s my heart beating so fast that I fear it might burst from my chest. It’s dreams that portray an entire workday. And you tell me that I don’t have a disability. You tell me that I have no need for an “emotional support animal” because I am a functioning human being who is just looking to get out of paying extra rent. What could a dog honestly do to help? Nevermind that when my thoughts spiral out of control the scent of her soft head is the only thing that steadies me. That when I want nothing more than to bundle up and hide inside forever, she convinces me to get outside and walk. She teaches me to stop and smell the flowers (and the dirt, and the grass, and the rocks).

Louise

And I’m 23. I’m a new graduate and I am trying to make a living for myself. And now I have anxiety medicine to buy. A small white pill that I’ve been taking for over a year and see no end in sight. Do you think that I enjoy relying on medication? Do you think I like the look the pharmacist gives me when they ask if I have any questions?  I don’t. And I am taking every step possible to find a solution. Yoga, exercise, a healthy diet, journaling… I even changed my entire career because my dream job was too stressful.

I understand that there is a fine line when it comes to emotional support animals. Believe me, in my line of business working in the apartment industry, I know there are individuals who choose to abuse this right. But when a girl sits down in front of you and she’s scared and she asks for your help; take a moment to actually listen to her. Don’t just assume that she’s trying to save a few bucks on rent. Don’t just assume that she’s being dramatic. Listen to her and understand that it took an insane amount of courage to confess the way she is feeling. She is not crazy; she is just looking for a little bit of help.

A Glass of Cabernet to Gulp Down my Fears

I am back, again. 1 year ago I wrote about my return to blogging. I mourned my failed senior project and promised to start anew, and fall back in love with words… And now it has been yet another year, and here I am. 0 blog posts under my belt and so much time wasted.

Girl, Wash Your Face

Lately, I’ve been listening to “Girl, Wash Your Face” by Rachel Hollis. If you haven’t read the book, close this post now and go read it because it is life-altering. If you have; then you probably already know why I’m here. Rachel tells you to write down your dreams and your goals and work like hell to follow them. As a girl who has been without a dream for a while now, I knew this was something that I needed to do. So I sat. And I stared at the blank paper before me and I wrote. I thought about all of the things that I would love to accomplish if I knew that failer was absolutely not an option. The result looked something like this:

Goals

As a daughter of 2 high school teachers, this list is stressful for me to read even now. Growing up in a small town means having an easily titled profession like: “nurse”, “police officer”, or “a waitress at The Galley”. But from a young age, I knew that my life would not be so easily titled. Below are some examples of conversations to prove my point:

Middle-aged, Decatur adult: “So Jamie, what are you studying?”
“Communication”
“Oh… so like you’ll be on the news?”
Hmm. Not quite. Let’s try “Public Relations”
“Oh… so like in politics?.. but not for that nasty Obama, right?”
Still no. Maybe event planning?
“Fun! So weddings?”

This has continued throughout my college experience, driving me constantly to calling my mom and sobbing that I am giving up and just becoming a teacher.

The same still applies today. I wish that I could easily compile the above list to just one word but that would be impossible. That’s because the list above doesn’t just describe what I want to do to make money, it describes an entire lifestyle. Some parts are specific and some parts are definitely not, but that’s okay because in my mind I can see it so clearly.

So here’s the challenge: 1 blog post every week for 2 months. Some might be short and some incredibly long. The topics? Endless. Cooking, baking, dog owning, wine drinking, and all around adjusting to my life as a young twenty-something. I’m here for it, and I hope that you are too.

Week 1 out of 8 – done.